PDF version of Genetics of Human Disease MSc

Contact details

Mrs Sue Walsh

Email: susan.walsh@ucl.ac.uk

Tel: +44 (0)20 7679 4168

Fees and funding

UK/EU 2013/14:

£12,250 (FT)

Overseas 2013/14:

£23,000 (FT)

UK/EU students: MRC-funded UGI Master's Excellence Scholarships: four of £4,200 towards fees and stipend of £15,740.

International students: five competitive UGI Master's Prize Scholarships to the value of £2,000.

For full details of these scholarships please: see this link.

For further information on other scholarships please visit the UCL Scholarships website (see link below).

Full details of funding opportunities can be found on the UCL Scholarships website

More information

Prospectus Entry

Biosciences (Division of)

Key facts

Research Assessment Rating

Interdisciplinary: not an assessed unit
(What is the RAE?)

The programme information on this page relates to 2013 entry. 2014 content to appear here shortly. 

Genetics of Human Disease MSc

The Genetics of Human Disease MSc aims to provide scientists and clinicians with an in-depth knowledge of the genetics of human disease and how this can be applied to improve healthcare through the development and application of diagnostic tests and therapeutic agents.

Degree summary

What will I learn?

The programme provides a thorough grounding in modern approaches to the understanding of the genetics of disease. Core courses provide a broad coverage of the genetics of disease, research skills and social aspects, whilst specialised courses and the research project allow more in-depth analysis in areas of genetics.

Why should I study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Division of Biosciences is one of the largest and most active research environments for basic biological research in the UK. UCL is in a unique position to offer both the basic science and application of genetics to improve human health, including multi-disciplinary outreach across the college.

Students will be based at the UCL Genetics Institute which is a world-leading centre developing and applying Biostatistical and Bioinformatic approaches to human and population genetics.

The Genetics Institute conducts internationally recognised research in the field of human genetics and aims to apply this expertise to the education of graduate students.

See subject website for more information:

Degree structure

Availability: Full-time 1 year

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of five core modules (75 credits), one optional module (15 credits) and a research dissertation (90 credits).

Core Modules

  • Advanced Human Genetics (I): Single Gene Disorders
  • Advanced Human Genetics (II): Complex Disorders
  • Understanding Bioinformatic Resources and their Application
  • Core Skills
  • Basic Statistics for Medical Sciences


  • Genetics of Cardiovascular and Related Complex Diseases
  • Genetics of Neurological Diseases
  • Statistics for Interpreting Genetic Data
  • Clinical Application of Pharmacogenetic Tests


Students undertake an original research project investigating topical questions in genetics which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words and an oral presentation.

Teaching and Learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars and tutorials, and will draw together cross-departmental teaching from Biology, Medicine, Psychology, Anthropology and Statistics. Student performance is assessed through coursework, unseen examination and the research project.

Further details available on subject website:

Entry and application

Entry requirements

Normally, a minimum of an upper-second class UK Bachelor's degree in biomedical sciences, life sciences or related subject area, or a medical degree (MBBS), or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants with an appropriate professional qualification and relevant work experience may also apply.

For overseas equivalencies see the relevant country page.

How to apply

You may choose to apply online or download application materials; for details visit www.ucl.ac.uk/gradapps

The deadline for applications is 30 June for international applicants and 3 August for UK/EU applicants. Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Who can apply?

The programme is suitable for students who wish to go on to further doctoral research, those who wish to convert from disciplines such as Statistics or Computing and those who wish to enter employment in an advanced capacity in industry or the public section in the field of Human Genetics.

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Genetics of Human Disease at graduate level
  • why you want to study Genetics of Human Disease at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic, personal and professional background meets the demands of this rigorous programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.


Students emerge well-versed in the different tools and scientific disciplines which will allow them to make full use of the wide ranging genetic discoveries that have happened over the past decade and will increasingly inform our understanding of human biology and disease. This positions them well for studentships in laboratories using genetic techniques to examine diseases such as heart disease, cancer and neurological disorders. Another large group will seek research jobs in the pharmaceutical industry, where an advanced training in laboratory genetic techniques as well as bioinformatic and statistical experience will be of value.

Find out more about London graduates' careers by visiting the Careers Group (University of London) website:

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